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 Enhancing The Quality of Education in the Petal School District

The Petal Education Foundation relies on the generous donations of its supporters to fund the many activities, events, scholarships and grants throughout the year.

Donations to General Operations ensures that the mission of the Petal Education Foundation is carried out on a daily basis, all year long.



The primary purpose of the Petal School District Education Foundation is to enhance the quality of education in the Petal School District by providing private funding to have a positive impact on our public schools.




The goal of the Foundation is to enhance the quality of education in the Petal School District by:


  • Rewarding students by providing scholarships to Petal High School graduates.

  • Encouraging innovative programs in the classroom by offering mini-grants for teachers.

  • Providing assistance to early childhood/early program.

  • Supporting the fine arts and athletic program.



The Foundation's mission is to enhance the quality of education in the Petal School District by providing private funding to have a positive impact on our public schools.


2022-23 Board of Directors

President – Kelly Lambert

Vice President – Julie Russell

Secretary – Dr. Matt Dillon*

Recording Secretary-Pacely Alford

Treasurer –Sheryle Coaker

Exec. Director – Leahne Lightsey*


Laurie Barker, Charlene Cannon, Jodie Koloc, Dee Dee Lowrey,

Shannon Newsome, Janice Robinson, Frank Reed, Sheila Smallwood, Jake Wilson


*Non Voting Members



Raising Future Generations of Leaders and Volunteers

The Petal Education Foundation Mini Grant program for teachers has grown from 4 mini grants @ $500.00 each to 13 @ $1000.00 equaling to date $92,000.00

The Petal Education Foundation serves as the “Local Champion” for the Dolly Parton Imagination Library.  Registered babies from birth through five years old who live in the 39465 area receive a free book each month up to their 5th birthday

The Petal Education Foundation was the catalyst for the development of the Petal School District Ambassador organization for high school juniors and seniors.

Petal School District Teacher of the Year

Petal School District Administrator of the Year

The Petal Education Foundation awards the “Petal School District Teacher of the Year” with monetary gifts as well as the “Administrator of the Year.”

The Petal Education Foundation is the fiscal partner and primary fundraiser of Petal’s Excel By 5  - Petal's Early Childhood Education Initiative. The Petal Education Foundation was instrumental in planning and funding

the Petal Excel By 5 Backyard Bus

Petal Schools Academic Yard Signs

The Petal Education Foundation sponsors the Academic Honor Yard Signs that students receive each nine weeks

Student/Staff Assistance Fund

The Petal Education Foundation aids Petal School District staff, faculty and students when tragedy occurs through the Student/Staff Assistance Fund

Petal Schools Employee Fund

The Petal Education Foundation initiates a school district fundraising campaign whereby employees can donate.  One fund is the ‘Friends of the Foundation’ Dependent Scholarship fund where graduating seniors meeting the criteria receive a ‘Friends of the Foundation’ scholarship.  The average scholarship totals $300.00 each.

To date, the Petal Education Foundation has awarded more than 503 scholarships totaling nearly $331,840.00.

Brunch for Petal Schools Retirees

The Petal Education Foundation hosts Petal School District retirees each Christmas with a themed brunch.

In Partnership with Petal Children's Task Force

Diaper Drive 1

Did you know?

A baby will go through 10,000 diapers by the time they are potty trained!

Diaper Drive 2

In Memory of Wes Foster

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Wes Foster Memorial Fund

Wesley “Wes” Anthony Foster, 46, of Petal, passed away on Sunday, February 13, 2022.
Wes is survived by his loving wife of 22 years Stephanie; his four beautiful children Mallory, Brody, Marley, and Macy.

Wes loved spending time with his family who will continue to honor his legacy by living their lives to the fullest, as he did. He was the definition of fun and had an uncanny ability to always be the life of the party. He was a skilled carpenter, machinist, and entrepreneur. He found great joy in spending time with his family boating, fishing, and hunting.

Donations can be made to the Wes Foster Memorial fund at the Petal Education Foundation, P.O. Box 948, Petal, MS. 39465. 

Robert E. Hendrix Scholarship Fund

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August, 2023

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PO Box 948
Petal, MS 39465


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